Socio-demographic correlates of quit attempts and successful quitting among smokers in India: Analysis of Global Adult Tobacco Survey 2016-17

Indian J Cancer. Jul-Sep 2021;58(3):394-401. doi: 10.4103/ijc.IJC_213_19.


Background: MPOWER is a policy package of six components intended to assist in the country-level implementation of effective tobacco control interventions. One of the six components of MPOWER strategy is to offer help to quit tobacco use. Majority of the smokers want to quit, but quitting is difficult due to the addictiveness of nicotine. They make multiple quitting attempts with little success. There is a need to know what proportion of smokers make a quit attempt, and among those who make an attempt, how many become successful quitters and their sociodemographic correlates.

Methods: Secondary analysis of data from the Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS-2) 2016-17, India was done. This nationally representative survey was conducted among persons aged 15 years or older. Weighted estimates were calculated after adjusting for clustering and stratification.

Results: A total of 35.5% adults who smoked tobacco during the past 12 months have made a quit attempt in the last 12 months. Around 14.2% of ever daily smokers currently do not smoke (which indicate successful quit rate). The study demonstrated strong associations of sociodemographic characteristics such as age group, educational attainment, caste, religion, geographic region, wealth quintiles, and visit to health care provider with the attempt to quit tobacco and successful quitting. The majority of quit attempts were made without any assistance (71.1%).

Conclusion: The study provides robust national evidence on attempts to quit tobacco, the success rates of those attempts, and their sociodemographic correlates. The study highlights the need to provide more cessation support to young, less educated people in the northern part of India.

Keywords: Global Adult Tobacco Survey; quit rate; tobacco cessation.